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Let’s fast forward! Fast forward to the day where we here the news that Walt Disney World and Disney parks around the world reopen. Why are we looking to the future? Great question. We’re looking to future to see how coronavirus could impact Disney Vacation Club resort options and how things could change when Walt Disney World reopens. It’s the question that every DVC member is wondering about. How will I use my points? Let’s jump in our time rover and blast to the future to see how Disney Vacation Club resort options could change!

Exterior of Copper Creek

Current State

We can’t look to the future without knowing where we currently stand. On March 16, 2020, Walt Disney World closed for the foreseeable future due to the global crisis, and the ripple effects of this announcement spread from there. For a full breakdown of the impact of COVID-19, please reference the following article. Among the ripples the Disney Vacation Club resorts and its members. Members reserve rooms with points that are distributed on a yearly basis.

At the moment, Disney Vacation Club is handling the member’s reservations and points in the following manner. Any reservations booked while Walt Disney World or the associated Disney Vacation Club Resort is closed will automatically be canceled and the member’s points are returned. If the points were borrowed from the future, the points will be returned to the associated use year. There are many more questions and loose ends around how Disney Vacation Club points will be handled. For our understanding, Disney Vacation Club is working on a solution and answers to all the associated questions around points.

One of the major questions is how Disney Vacation Club resort options could change in the future?

Major updates happening as part of the Saratoga Springs Refurbishment

Disney Vacation Club Resort Options

How could the resorts be impacted? Traditionally Disney Vacation Club resorts operate at 95% capacity throughout the year. Yes, there is usually no “quiet-period” when talking about Disney Vacation Club resorts. When Disney Vacation Club points are sold to members the assumption is the resorts will be open 365 days a year and the total number of points sold across all members matches this assumption. No one could have expected Walt Disney World to close for an extended period of time and it has a direct impact on members and how they are able to use their points. In short, a portion of members will have extra points due to the resort not being open for a period of time and demand would exceed 100% of the possible capacity.

Potential Solution

Let’s channel our inner Dr. Marsh, as the future could truly be in the past! One of the potential Disney Vacation Club resort options could be opening up more resorts to members. Traditionally, Disney Vacation Club members can book non-DVC Disney resorts with their points, but at a much higher per night rate than DVC rooms. Previously when the Disney Vacation Club resorts reached capacity Disney has opened up the option for members to the book rooms at the moderate resorts. We’re looking at you Coronado Springs, Caribbean Beach, and Riverside/French Quarter. This could be a potential option, as early thoughts believe it could take up 18 months for tourism across the board to rebound from the global crisis.

Additionally, the idea around opening up Disney Vacation Club resort options was mentioned by Jim Hill of Jim Hill Media. With the idea members may be able to book at a variety of resorts around Walt Disney World, with points per night options being on par with traditional Disney Vacation Club studio rooms. For example, Disney would lower the points per night for a night a Contemporary to make equal to a studio night at Bay Lake Tower. This would open up more rooms for DVC members and help with the use of points and dealing with higher demand. Disney would only be able to do this option if demand for non-DVC Disney rooms were less.

Another option on the table could be incentives. Traditionally, a Disney Vacation Club studio would we equal to a deluxe guest room. If Disney is in a situation where deluxe non-DVC rooms are not available they may pivot to an incentive. For example, if you stay at Pop Century, you may receive a guaranteed boarding group for Rise of the Resistance. Or something along these lines.

At the moment, these are just rumors and nothing is confirmed by Disney Vacation Club.

Our Thoughts

We like it. If this Disney Vacation Club resort option turns out to be the solution, we would be good with it. Usually, non-DVC resorts cost more points per night than DVC resorts, so having the option to try other resorts is a win our books. Overall, we believe Disney Vacation Club will have to be flexible with options, as all members will be effected differently by the global crisis. Whether it’s exceptions for resort options, banking points, etc. everything should be on the table. Based on our experience, we fully expect Disney Vacation Club to rise to the occasion. Time to jump back into our time rover and head home!